Over the past week, a variety of privacy concerns have emerged as the Trump administration is set to rollback select FCC protections for browsing history. As we outlined last week, however, there are a variety of ways to go about protecting yourself when it comes to online privacy.
What are you doing to protect your web history?
Over the last week, both the US Senate and House voted to overturn privacy rules, drawing a variety of media attention. The move, in its most basic form, paves the way for ISPs to be able to sell your browsing history and other activity. While some ISPs have argued that they won’t partake in such a practice, privacy concerns still loom.
Central to the protections overturned are three things. One that required Internet service providers to ask for customer permission before sharing their browsing history with other companies. Another, required ISPs to protect browsing data from hackers and alert customers of any breaches. Finally, the legislation proposes that the FCC be prohibited from passing any additional privacy restrictions that would protect the user data of customers.
“The consequences of passing this resolution are clear: broadband providers like AT&T, Comcast, and others will be able to sell your personal information to the highest bidder without your permission,” said Representative Anna Eshoo (D-CA) on the House floor this afternoon.
“And no one will be able to protect you, not even the Federal Trade Commission that our friends on the other side of the aisle keep talking about.”
The next step for the legislation is for President Trump to sign, and he’s expected to do that.
As Ben Lovejoy outlined last week, using a VPN, or virtual private networks, is one of the best ways to go about protecting yourself. It encrypts all of your Internet traffic, meaning that anyone who intercepts it won’t be able to tell which sites you are accessing, including your ISP. Additionally, it disguises your location and makes it appear as though your traffic originates from someplace else.
When looking for a VPN, one of the biggest qualities to consider is if the VPN collects logs or not. If it does, then the VPN itself can see your data, but if it doesn’t, then you’re set.